Reigning Olympic time trial cycling
champion Fabian Cancellara could be forced to pull out of the London
Games after crashing during the men's road race on Saturday. The
Swiss slammed hard into a barrier after badly negotiating a right hand
bend as he led a leading group late in the 249.5 km race eventually won
by Alexandre Vinokourov of Kazakhstan.
Although he went on to
finish the race in 106th place, Cancellara was left with cuts and grazes
and a suspected injured shoulder. A subsequent X-ray revealed
right shoulder bruising but no fractures, suggesting 'Spartacus' - as
the tough Swiss rider is known - could start Wednesday's race against
Officials with the Swiss delegation said however that 31-year-old Cancellara remains "uncertain". The full extent of his injury is likely to become apparent on Monday
and Tuesday but Cancellara, a record four-time world time trial
champion, fractured his collarbone earlier this season during a heavy
crash at the Tour of Flanders.
Another such fracture would likely
have ruled him out, and Cancellara admitted before undergoing his scan
he feared the worst.
"Have no words left. The tears are stronger
then the pain. Now we are waiting in the polyclinic in the athletes'
village for the X-ray," he said in a message on Twitter.
Cancellara recently won the opening prologue of the Tour de France,
where he wore the coveted yellow jersey for the first seven stages.